This is the question that Ed and I have asked ourselves many times since moving here to North Carolina. Where do we begin when looking for a church to get plugged into and to serve?
Usually, we start looking online at websites of local churches and by asking our friends of churches that they know of/would recommend/know people who attend, etc. When we did this, we were assured of one thing: THERE ARE A GAZILLION CHURCHES IN THIS AREA! How would a non-believer or new Christian know where to start if we sure don’t? A few churches were highly recommended, so we tried those and while they were great in their own ways, we still aren’t sure we have found the church that the Lord has for us. Then we tried a few that we liked their mission, beliefs, etc. on their websites, and again, just not where the Lord is calling us to get plugged into.
We have had a really bad experience with a church in the past and partly because we rushed into making that our permanent home without the Lord confirming to us that was where He wanted us. We don’t want that to happen again so we are willing to be patient, but trying church after church after church and leaving every Sunday knowing that wasn’t it either can leave you wearisome. We aren’t picky, we know that no church is perfect, and that church isn’t about having the right feel and the right things for us or just about helping us grow. And still the search continues.
But we are hopeful. We have been a part of some really great churches in the past (which may be why we have high standards!) and we know that somewhere in Raleigh is the church for us, it just would be nice to get plugged into that church and start serving sooner rather than later. Until then, we will keep visiting. We will keep praying. We will keep asking ourselves the questions of what do we value in a church, how far do we want to travel so that we are still able to be used by this church to reach our community in Fuquay Varina, is this a church we can invite our neighbors and non-believers to and be assured they will be welcomed and surrounded by the good news of Jesus?
So please pray for us in our search to find a local body that we can be used in to reach our community and to grow closer to the Lord. We feel that one of the churches we have visited may be where the Lord wants us, but we aren’t 100% sure and are still waiting for the Lord to confirm that to us through this Word, others, and by seeking him in prayer.
Oh, and just a little side note, we took Kinsley to get pictures made this weekend. We dressed her up in a cute Christmas outfit, traveled to the picture studio, posed her just right, and then…..well she cried the whole time. And we aren’t talking a tantrum that goes away. For a good 30 minutes or more, despite everything we tried to do, she cried uncontrollably with huge tears like she was afraid for her life. Needless to say, choosing just one picture wasn’t hard as there were only two that were decent. We did buy one of those and even though she isn’t smiling, it is a great picture to remind us of her as a 20 1/2 month old!